Weekly Update
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Wow have I forgotten to do this for some weeks now.  I apologize.  It is now on my Monday to-do list for every Monday. General Things: I so enjoyed watching the students play in the football game and tennis matches next week.  Our student athletes really are talented.  This week I will be attending soccer at Enka and the cross country race at Owen to cheer our Rockets on.  Thanks to the students for inviting me to watch them! The end of the grading period is coming up and I can't believe how quickly the year is going.  All of the classes have really settled into things and I am excited for what the rest of the year has to offer. We have a Donor's Choose project going currently for great games for the students to play when we finish early, they finish their personal work early, or as a reward.  All of the games on the list were specially chosen for their ability to provoke deep thoughts and challenge minds.  We are only $62 away, please consider donating. Here is the link. https://www.donorschoose.org/project/games-for-gifted-students/3635156/?utm_source=dc&utm_medium=page&utm_campaign=project&utm_term=teacher_977962&rf=page-dc-2018-10-project-teacher_977962&challengeid=252726 The P.O.W. and Quicktionary challenges have started up.  Ask your child about these weekly challenges and solve them together as a family! Sixth Grade: We wrapped up our time capsule projects, did a great breakout box, and are on to our Gifted Awareness lessons for the year.  We are learning about ourselves as gifted learners and what implications that has for us. Seventh Grade: We wrapped up our This I Believe essays, did a breakout box, and are on to our first unit on Conflict.  Students are researching a conflict of the past and will be presenting their findings to the class.  We will be integrating Conflict into much of our study this year in seventh grade and this is the first real experience we will have with it. Eighth Grade: We wrapped up our This I Believe essays and did a breakout box in eighth grade as well.  Now we are beginning our Gifted Awareness unit and My Place in the Universe unit by jigsawing a book called Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell.  We will be examining and discussing success and what it takes to be successful and how this applies to our own lives.
Posted by Kimberly Altman  On Mar 15, 2019 at 2:42 PM
  
I was so busy last week and had so much fun I forgot to do an update! Last week I met with sixth and seventh grade groups for the first time.  It was great.  We had conversations about what students expect from the AIG program and I know now what each group of students would like to do this year.  I also know about the things certain students dislike and can provide support through the mandated activities that are less motivating to some students.  It was great to start to get to know the students.  We did STEM activities and learned how to try again, how to fail, and how to communicate and work together with a sense of urgency. In eighth grade, I was able to be a part of ELA class as we begin with book clubs.  I am anticipating great discussion to come out of our study and am enjoying reading and rereading the books.  1984 and Fahrenheit 451 were two books that I loved when I was in eighth grade and I have always wanted to read To Kill a Mockingbird and Ender's Game.   I was also able to spend time in sixth grade ELA classes, helping students get their ISNs set up.  Reading the acrostic poems students wrote about themselves was a great way to get to know them even better and being able to support the students in their ELA classes is going to be a great addition to pull-out enrichment time. As I told some of the classes, I left most of my classroom decor at the elementary school.  It just didn't seem middle school appropriate.  Because of that, the walls here are barren and kind of sad.  So, I have asked students to make posters with things they'd like to see on the walls.  Art is always welcome.  More specifically, I'd love some great quotes on posters.  Quotes that students want to look at when they're here.  So bring them in and I'll stick them up!  Let's make this room a place we all want to spend time in! Seventh graders also have an optional assignment posted to their Google Classrooms.  It is an essay contest run through the Thomas Wolfe Memorial.  Directions for this contest are clearly posted in the GCs.  Any seventh grader wishing to complete this essay can use STAR time on Mondays to do so.  S/he can come to my room during this time to work or for me to help with planning, editing, and revising.  Again, this is optional. This week, seventh and eighth graders will begin "This I Believe" essays.  This is a spin-off of an NPR special.  Students will explore who they are and what is central to their belief system.  Sixth graders will begin their time capsule projects, also exploring what is important to them right now. This post was longer than most will be since I accidentally skipped a week.  Don't forget to follow us on twitter and instagram @msaltmansclass.
Posted by Kimberly Altman  On Mar 15, 2019 at 2:41 PM
  
Well today didn't exactly go as planned due to the 2-Hour Delay schedule.  Both 8th grade groups will likely need an extra week to complete their "This I Believe" essays, which is fine.  This is also what we're working on in 7th grade this week.  Hopefully by the end of this week, students will have fully planned essays and arrive ready to write next week.  I cannot wait to see what each group ends up being passionate about and what they end up writing. Sixth grade continues to work on time capsule projects.  Students can bring things in this week or wait until next week to bring in objects.  I am giving students a paper copy of the directions so they may work on this at home.  The Google Classroom is accessible from any computer also.  The time capsules are due and will be sealed NEXT WEEK so students need to make sure to bring them in next week and that they have everything (or will end up with everything by the end of the class period.)
Posted by Kimberly Altman  On Sep 17, 2018 at 1:44 PM
  
I've been busy getting things up and running this week!  I am excited to meet with students for the first time next week.  We are going to have a great year.  Check back each week to see and update of what we've done and what's coming up in our classroom.  And don't forget to follow us on twitter and instagram @msaltmansclass.
Posted by Kimberly Altman  On Aug 29, 2018 at 2:18 PM